When it comes to icing cakes, practice makes perfect. This is especially true when you are making a wedding cake that consists of different layers with icing or filling in between. Chocolate wedding cake is especially challenging because the dark-coloured crumbs can easily be seen through the icing if it is not done properly. Take your time and follow these basic steps to make icing your wedding cake easier and faster.
Bake each layer of cake until it only slightly bounces back when you press it with your finger. When you remove the cake from the oven, immediately cover it with a clean kitchen towel and press down any bulging in the centre of the cake.
Allow the cake to cool completely and settle for several hours, if not overnight. This will ensure that the cake does not continue to shift as it sits. If you ice the cakes too quickly, the layer may begin to bulge in the centre, pushing your icing out between the layers and making the cake uneven.
Lay the first layer top down on the cake platter, so you can place icing on the bottom of the cake. Fill a decorator bag with medium consistency icing, using no tip on the decorator bag. Line the edge of the cake with icing, and allow the icing to harden slightly, about 30 minutes. This will prevent the icing from seeping out the sides when you place the next layer on top. Fill in the centre of the cake with icing using a spatula. Use enough icing to completely cover the surface without any of the chocolate cake showing through, about a quarter of an inch deep.
Place the next layer on top, with the bottom side of the cake facing upward. Allow the cakes to sit together for about 15 minutes to allow it them settle completely, then repeat Step 3.
Use a straight bladed spatula to spread a thin layer of icing around the sides of the cake. It's fine if some of the chocolate crumbs show through. This will prevent the crumbs from coming through the next layer, acting as a sort of seal.
Ice the cake with a second layer immediately upon finishing the first layer, creating a thick layer of frosting that is about 1/8- to ¼-inch thick. When you run out of icing, swivel the spatula back in the opposite direction, and slowly pull the spatula out of the icing. This will keep you from tearing off any of the cake below.
Smooth the icing by holding the spatula vertically at a slight angle, so that the spatula is not flush against the sides of the cake. This will prevent air pockets from forming. Move quickly around the edge of the cake to smooth away any roughness. Use the same method to ice the top of the cake.
Instead of the spatula, use the cake icer tip #789 to ice the cake with a decorating bag. This will ensure that you have the perfect amount of icing every time.